Mattel Honors Anti-Israel Olympian by Creating a Hijab-Wearing Barbie

Toy company Mattel has honored several female athletes by creating dolls in their likenesses as part of its “Shero” Barbie line. However, the latest athlete to be honored is a vocal critic of Israel.

Ibtihaj Muhammad made history as the first female Muslim-American Olympic athlete to compete wearing a hijab, the traditional Muslim headgear that is mandatory in some Islamic countries.

She also became the first Muslim-American female athlete to win an Olympic medal for the U.S., as she and her team took bronze for sabre fencing in the 2016 Rio Games.

Sejal Shah Miller, the vice president of Global Marketing for Barbie, believes the Barbie Doll, the first to ever wear a hijab, is about “celebrating” and “embracing” Muhammad.

“Ibtihaj is an inspiration to countless girls who never saw themselves represented, and by honoring her story, we hope this doll reminds them that they can be and do anything,” Miller said said in a news release, according to HuffPost.

But Muhammad is not only famous for being an medal-winning Muslim-Americans Olympic athlete. She is also an outspoken critic of Israel.

On her Twitter page, Muhammad has made no secret of her anti-Israel sentiment.

In November 2012, she claimed that Israel was “militarily occupying Gaza.”

Muhammad said she sees her Barbie doll as an inspiration for young girls. She indicated that in honoring her, Mattel is choosing to make a political statement.

“I think its revolutionary for Barbie to take a stand in this moment that we’re in – and I would say, as a country, to have a doll wear a hijab and be the first of its kind,” Muhammad told People magazine.

“There has never been a Barbie doll to wear a hijab before. I’m really excited to have this moment happen in my life and also for all these little girls now who can shop for Barbie doll that may look them, may wear a hijab like they do, or like their mom does, or like a friend does.”

Muhammad implied that she wants to empower other minority women as well.

“I’m excited to just partner with a brand that I know honors powerful women who are breaking barriers and whose sole goal is to impact the future leaders of tomorrow,” she said.

“It’s cool to have Muslim girls in the conversation, to have African-Americans as fencers is also really cool. I feel like we’re just shattering all the little glass ceilings here.”

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